§ Mr. Bercow
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food which countries are excluded from North Sea fishing grounds until 31 December 2002 through accession treaties; how many vessels will subsequently have right of access; and if he will make a statement on the consequences for UK vessel access. 623W
§ Mr. Morley
Under the relevant accession treaties, all Finnish, Spanish and Portuguese fishing vessels are excluded from fishing in the North Sea until 31 December 2002. As things currently stand, they will be able to fish for non-quota stocks only thereafter. UK vessel access to the North Sea will not be affected.